BBC bosses remain determined to remove classified football scores from Radio 5 Live’s Saturday schedule, despite a backlash against the move.
The decision has been condemned by the Football Supporters’ Association, while some fans have started a petition calling on the broadcaster to change its mind.
However, in response to what she described as “a few complaints”, the BBC has elaborated on her reasons for dropping a long-running feature of her Sports Report show.
A statement said: “We appreciate the strength of sentiment versus classified football scores in the sports report. It’s always difficult when a program with a particular story changes, but there are good reasons for the change.
“With the addition of the live Premier League game at 5:30pm to our coverage, Sports Report has been condensed into a shorter program – cut from 1 hour to 25 minutes. Reading the classifieds took around 5-7 minutes which would have taken up around a third of the program – limiting the range of sports we could cover.
“We would like to reassure our listeners that results from all football leagues will continue to be shared throughout the program and into the afternoon. The results are also available in full on the BBC Sport website and on BBC One during Final Score. A live match at 5:30 p.m. is a great addition to the 5 live schedule.”
James Alexander Gordon became a household name when he read the scores of the day to listeners for 40 years before Charlotte Green took over after his retirement in 2013.
The petition, urging the BBC to keep the secret results, says: “Although scores are available online, mobile and on TV, there has always been best practice of getting in the car or listening to the radio on the go.
“When your mobile coverage fails you (as it often does in crowded football stadiums) there’s always Sports Report to tell you how the rest of the football pyramid fared today.
“Sports reporting may be an abbreviated affair these days, but we as fans would rather do without a manager interview than abolish an institution that has served us and the football world for decades.”
However, as of late Wednesday afternoon, the petition had received just 71 signatures.